LATICS defender Harrison McGahey is on the road to recovery from a calf injury, but remains ruled out ahead of Saturday's visit of Colchester United.

The summer signing impressed in pre-season but missed the start of the campaign because of the problem.

But while head coach Keith Curle is keen to ease the burden on his stretched squad, he insists he will not be rushing McGahey - or any of his players - back.

McGahey, 25, was in and out of the Scunthorpe side last season because of a recurring calf injury. And it is with that in mind that Curle is keen to ensure the former Rochdale defender has fully recovered before he is considered for first team duties.

"We won't rush anybody back. We have a return to training protocol that they have to go through," said Curle.

"Harrison has returned to field based rehab. He's not joining in (with the squad) yet but he's out on the grass.

"Last season he had a nightmare at Scunthorpe where they rushed him back and he got injured again, rushed him back, got injured again, and that curtailed his season.

"He's done so much work in pre-season and been excellent the last thing he needed now was an injury.

"What we won't do is make the same mistake that other people have made."

Laurie Walker is likely to remain in goal after returning to the club on an emergency seven-day loan signing from MK Dons following a shoulder injury to Danny Rogers, and Jayson Leutwiler's unavailability due to contractual issues.

Walker, who ended last season with Latics following injury to Ian Lawlor, went straight into the line-up for Tuesday's game at Bristol Rovers.

"Laurie's a good character and a good goalkeeper. He understands what we want from him and what's needed from him," said Curle, who reported back to the club himself this week following his period of isolation after testing positive for coronavirus.

"He played League One football on the opening game of the season at MK Dons so he's up to speed."

Jamie Bowden, on loan from Spurs, started the season but has missed the last two games due to isolation under Covid protocols.

The midfielder is expected to report back for duty at Boundary Park on Monday.